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Debian 5
Ubuntu Server 10.10
Red Hat Ent. 5
CentOS
Gentoo 10.1
Slackware 13
ArchLinux
Open Suse 11.3
Fedora 13
Madriva

for Apache, Php & Mysql?

(damn distro, i wish linux got only 1 main distro not this safari)

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Well, you can always create your own distro :) –  Ency Jan 23 '11 at 21:27
    
Do you have experience with any of those? –  John Gardeniers Jan 23 '11 at 22:25
    
Debian 6 is going to be released very soon, for a PHP/Mysql system is almost certainly stable enough to use it now. –  Zoredache Jan 24 '11 at 0:05
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5 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Ignore the Ubuntu 10.10 suggestion. If you're rolling a server, avoid the non LTS release. I'd suggest Debian if you're comfortable with the package system as it has a smaller foot-print than Ubuntu 10.04.

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I always end up using Debian for any "little server" installations. A lean base plus easy installs and upgrades via apt make it great for the small stuff.

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You mentioned PHP. How important is it to you to have the latest-greatest PHP? If you need to stay on the bleeding-edge of PHP development you need to use a distro with a fast release cycle or you need to accept that you will be back-porting or building your own PHP binaries. For some people who are really pushing the edge, staying with the absolute newest version of PHP is very important.

  • Pick one that upgrades the most frequently, or learn how backport on your own. If you don't want to learn how to backport you have to accept that you are not going to have a very stable environment.

Are you willing to accept that you may have to do a complete upgrade about every six months?

  • Ubuntu non-LTS
  • Fedora

Do you need commercial support?

  • Ubuntu Server LTS
  • Red Hat Ent.
  • Open Suse

Are you more familiar with any of the above?

Do you expect that you will ever need binary packages from vendors like Oracle?

The answers to these questions should quickly narrow down your list.

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If you are a newbie i suggest you Ubuntu 10.10, in the installation process you can select LAMP Server and once installed the LAMP Server is ready.

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no i don't like ubuntu.. thus with debian it's still pretty easy: apt-get install apache2 php5 libapache2-mod-php5 –  dynamic Jan 23 '11 at 21:33
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Debian is a fine choice and it sounds like you are comfortable with it so I'd recommend that. Redhat requires a subscription to patch so if you want rpm based for whatever reason CentOS is a good choice.

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